17 October 2017
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PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

17.04.2017

Remarks by Russia’s Permanent Representative at the OPCW, Ambassador Alexander Shulgin, at the 54th Meeting of the OPCW Executive Council, The Hague, April 13, 2017

Madame Chairperson,

Being a responsible party to the CWC, the Russian Federation unconditionally condemns the use of chemical weapons by anyone anywhere. We strongly deny any accusations against Russia that it acted as an enabler in the tragic events in Syria or was even complicit in the perpetration of any crime using chemical weapons. This is a blatant falsehood.

The message echoed at this meeting by a number of delegations that Russia is becoming increasingly isolated on the international stage and stands on its own following the April 12, 2017 vote in the UN Security Council is totally groundless. This is wishful thinking. In real life, Russia has adopted an inclusive and honest position that is clear for anyone acting in good faith. Russia could not accept the draft resolution during yesterday’s vote at the UN Security Council.

In fact, the Western troika submitted a draft resolution to the UN Security Council that was biased, lacked evidence and also pointed a finger at Syria. It was only formally devoted to investigating the Idlib incident, since it even lacked a provision on the need to work on the ground. Against this backdrop, Russia had no other option but to veto the document. No one should be misled about why Russia used its veto right in the UN Security Council.

I would also like to respond to what US Ambassador Kenneth Ward said about Russia allegedly making false claims about the OPCW, pretending that its executive made statements they had not. That was a very strange thing to hear, to say the least. Let me remind you of a quote from the report of the 76th Session of the OPCW Executive Council, in which the Council noted “the completed elimination by 23 June 2014, i.e. in the first half of 2014 as envisaged in EC-M-33/DEC.1 (dated 27 September 2013), of all declared chemical weapons material and equipment from the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic, despite uniquely challenging conditions.” May I ask you what this means, if not a confirmation by the OPCW that the elimination of chemical weapons in Syria was completed? So my advice for the US Ambassador would be to pay more attention to official OPCW documents. As for the clarification made to the initial declaration by Syria, everyone is aware of the challenging conditions in which it was prepared. It had to be submitted on very short notice and in the midst of a military conflict. It is obvious that the Syrians will have to clarify some points. There is nothing unusual about this, and other states that possess chemical weapons, including the US, have adjusted their initial declarations as well.




LATEST EVENTS

16.10.2017 - First Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Titov’s answer to a media question regarding British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson’s visit to Russia

Question: The Foreign Office announced yesterday that Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson would visit Russia. Do you have any comments to make on this?


11.10.2017 - Press release on Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov’s meeting with Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan Hekmat Khalil Karzai

On October 10, Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov met with visiting Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan Hekmat Khalil Karzai, who arrived in Moscow to attend the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group meeting.


11.10.2017 - Foreign Ministry statement on the situation in the Autonomous Community of Catalonia, Spain

Guided by the fundamental principles of international law, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation views the developments in Catalonia as the internal affair of Spain.


10.10.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at the expanded meeting of the CIS Foreign Ministers Council, Sochi, October 10, 2017

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at the expanded meeting of the CIS Foreign Ministers Council, Sochi, October 10, 2017


10.10.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson

On October 9, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke by phone with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the latter’s initiative.


09.10.2017 - Russian Energy Week Forum plenary session

President Putin attended a plenary session of the first Russian Energy Week (REW) Energy Efficiency and Energy Development International Forum.


09.10.2017 - Comment by the Information and Press department on the upcoming meeting of the CIS Council of Foreign Ministers

On October 10, a regular meeting of the CIS Council of Foreign Ministers will be held in Sochi within the framework of Russia’s CIS Chairmanship in 2017. The agenda is comprised of 18 topics covering a broad range of issues related to CIS cooperation. The CIS foreign ministers will discuss practical measures for promoting multilateral cooperation between the CIS countries and will exchange opinions on current international issues. The documents they will adopt following this meeting will be forwarded to the CIS Council of Heads of State.


06.10.2017 - Embassy Press Officer on the adoption of the Ukrainian law “On education”

On 25 September the President of Ukraine signed the discriminatory law “On education” that violates human rights and infringes the rights of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian citizens belonging to national minorities.


06.10.2017 - Interview of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov with the Asharq Al-Awsat Pan-Arab Newspaper, October 2017

Question: Regarding the visit of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to Russia, how do you assess the Russian-Saudi relations at the bilateral level and in terms of discussion over the region’s crises? Answer: We share the opinion that there is a need for further progressive development of multidimensional Saudi-Russian relations, including for the purpose of ensuring regional and global stability. Saudi Arabia and Russia maintain a confidential political dialogue, inter alia, at the highest and high levels. In early September, I paid a working visit to the Kingdom, during which I had an audience with King Salman and held talks with Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir. I am satisfied with the results.


05.10.2017 - Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, Moscow, October 4, 2017

It has to be stressed that this year the Ministry hired the largest number of university graduates in the last five years. All in all, 115 graduates have been hired this year.



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